About the ECBCS
Approximately one third of primary energy is consumed in non-industrial buildings such as dwellings, offices, hospitals, and schools where it is utilised for space heating and cooling, lighting and the operation of appliances. In terms of the total energy end use, this consumption is comparable to that used in the entire transport sector. Hence energy use in buildings represents a major contributor to fossil fuel use and carbon dioxide production. Following uncertainties in energy supply and concern over the risk of global warming, many countries have now introduced target values for reducing energy consumption in buildings. Overall, these are aimed at reducing energy consumption by between 15-30%. To achieve such a target, international co-operation, in which research activities and knowledge can be shared, is seen as an essential activity.
In recognition of the significance of such energy use, the International Energy Agency has established an Implementing Agreement on Energy Conservation in Buildings and Community Systems (ECBCS). The function of ECBCS is to undertake research and provide an international focus for building energy efficiency. Tasks are undertaken through a series of annexes that are directed at energy saving technologies and activities that support their application in practice. Results are also used in the formulation of international and national energy conservation policies and standards.
ECBCS undertakes a diverse range of activities both through its individual annexes and through centrally organised development and information exchange. ECBCS countries are free to choose which Annexes to take part in. Activities usually take the form of a 'Task Shared' Annex in which each country commits an agreed level of effort. Occasionally an Annex may be either jointly or part jointly funded. More informal activities take place through Working Groups.
An introduction to the ECBCS activies can be viewed in the Slide Show presentation.